La Porte City Hangs Ribbons for Missing 16-year-old Jake Wilson

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LA PORTE CITY, Iowa -- It’s been four months since 16-year-old Jake Wilson went missing after taking a walk near a creek by his house.

La Porte City residents said Jake is on their minds and in their hearts every day.

“Jake was our kid. He walked our sidewalks. He went to our schools. He had friends here. He lived here. I almost feel like we let him down because we weren’t being the nosey neighbors that we were supposed to be,” shop owner Shelly Hopkins said.

Faded blue ribbons and signs that were put up months ago are now being replaced with fresh ones.

“I think it’s important and the community thinks it’s important to replace those faded ribbons that way it keeps fresh in our mind and it’s just a sign that Jake isn’t fading in our memory right now,” La Porte City Police Chief Chris Brecher said.

The town is not only making and effort for Jake, they’re spreading the word about Mollie Tibbetts too.

“It emphasizes the importance of keeping these kids out in the news. Whether they’re small town kids or big city kids, they’re still kids. And we have to keep them out in the public eye. It is so easy to get busy with other things and so that’s what we are trying to do,” Hopkins said.

Brecher said they have binders full of leads they’ve already investigated but, tips and leads have slowed down.

“You know we are at the point now that it’s been four months. So we are probably looking at one lead a week, sometimes two, sometimes none. The more we can get Jake’s name back out there, the more people that keep sharing this on social media, or any sort of an outlet, the more of a chance we have of a lead coming in,” Brecher said.

Hopkins said the town is still full of hope.

“I firmly believe that he is going to come home. I firmly believe it. If I didn’t, I don’t think we would be doing what we are doing,” Hopkins said.

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